Activition – Guitar Hero

guitar heroActivision Blizzard, Inc. is the world’s largest pure-play interactive entertainment software publisher with leading market positions across all categories of the growing interactive entertainment software industry. Activision is the video game publisher best known for game franchises such as World of Warcraft, Guitar Hero, Tony Hawk Ride and Call of Duty. With global operations in 13 countries, Activision has grown into a $5 billion video game powerhouse.

The Guitar Hero franchise continues to redefine gaming by delivering innovative entertainment experiences that tap into the universal dream of being a rock star. Guitar Hero is not only changing how video games are played, but creating a whole a new experience for people to interact with video games. Activision has introduced a cooperative band experience for consoles with Guitar Hero World Tour by adding a drum controller and microphone to the popular guitar controller.

Situation

Activision inherited the Guitar Hero brand through their acquisition of RedOctane. Activision was unfamiliar with warranty replacements required from hardware games and for that reason, relied on legacy processes developed by RedOctane. Because RedOctane’s process were mostly manual, with no troubleshooting, Activision customers would be referred to RedOctane’s website for warranty support. For some games, the customer had to email a copy of the receipt, further delaying the time to process the claim. The customer could call RedOctane for warranty support, but due to limited resources, call handle times were very high. The resulting outcome was a large number of dissatisfied customers with the RedOctane warranty process. With the growing popularity of gaming products with hardware components and a pipeline of new hardware games on the horizon, Activision was tasked with creating a new process that would be automated throughout the company to provide a better customer experience.

In addition to working with new warranty support processes, the Guitar Hero World Tour game was released just before the busy 2008 holiday season. Due to the increased number of hardware components in Guitar Hero World Tour and the complexity of these components working together, Activision was preparing for a larger number of warranty replacements. Since RedOctane did not have the technology architecture to support the higher demand for returns, Activision needed a scalable solution that would provide better service to the customer without increasing contact center costs. Additionally, RedOctane’s system was not integrated with Activision’s CRM, which was a key component for the new system.

Goals & Expectation

  • Better customer experience with multiple file claiming methods – agent or web based
  • Lower costs by deflecting new calls away from level 2 agents
  • A faster return lifecycle with advanced replacements
  • Customer visibility into any stage of the return lifecycle
  • Improved customer communication and proactive notifications
  • 24 x 7 web self service
  • International fulfillment and web self service in 9 total languages
  • Integration with CRM for incident tracking
  • Customer Portal with return status, tracking information, and inbound shipping label
  • A robust technology infrastructure to manage the large volume of returns
  • Automation of the complete RMA process from Activision-to fulfillment house-to customer

RiverStar Solution

The RiverStar Return Management Solution was implemented giving Activision a completely automated process that includes an agent facing module within the CRM interface and a web self-service portal for customers to initiate the warranty and return authorization process. The new solution streamlined the process with Activision customer support, their call center outsourcer, RedOctane warranty operations, the various fulfillment houses, the customer, and the Guitar Hero product team.

In addition to working with new warranty support processes, the Guitar Hero World Tour game was released just before the busy 2008 holiday season. Due to the increased number of hardware components in Guitar Hero World Tour and the complexity of these components working together, Activision was preparing for a larger number of warranty replacements. Since RedOctane did not have the technology architecture to support the higher demand for returns, Activision needed a scalable solution that would provide better service to the customer without increasing contact center costs. Additionally, RedOctane’s system was not integrated with Activision’s CRM, which was a key component for the new system.

Results

The new return management solution provided Activision:

  • Streamlined Process – A new streamlined the process with Activision customer support, their call center outsourcer, RedOctane warranty operations, the various fulfillment houses, the customer, and the Guitar Hero product team.
  • CRM IntegrationThe new return management solution was tightly integrated with Activision’s existing CRM system.
  • Scalability – The new solution offered scalability that provides better service to customers without increasing contact center costs.
activision

Industry: Electronic Gaming

Location: Santa Monica, California

Revenue: $2 to $5 billion (USD) per year

Call Centers:

Employees: 5,000+